No podcast this week -- the podmaster is on a break -- but I'm posting the Fox press release about what's coming, after the jump ...
Last night, auditions ended for the sixth season of AMERICAN IDOL and the judges’ Top 24 semifinalists were revealed. Next week, the 24 contestants will be split into two groups – 12 males and 12 females – who will each perform a song of his or her choice for America. The fate of these 24 contestants – one of whom will be the next American Idol – now rests in the viewers’ hands. See what happens when the competition heats up, nerves rattle and contestants shine or fizzle out on the season’s first performance shows Tuesday, Feb. 20 (8:00-10:00 PM ET/PT) and Wednesday, Feb. 21 (8:00-10:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX. Then tune in to see who America chooses to continue in the competition when two males and two females are eliminated on the first results show of Season Six Thursday, Feb. 22 (8:00-9:00 PM ET live/PT tape-delayed).
The Top 12 male singers will perform Tuesday, Feb. 20 (8:00-10:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX. At the end of the show, the phone lines will open for two hours and AMERICAN IDOL viewers will vote for their favorite male contestant(s). Fans can use the branded toll-free telephone numbers (1-866-IDOLS-01, -02, etc.) until 12:00 AM ET/PT (11:00 PM CT/MT), subject to time zone restrictions, or vote via text messaging from their Cingular Wireless phones. Cingular Wireless customers can send the word “vote” to the four-digit short number (5701, 5702, etc.) representing the contestant of their choice.
The Top 12 female singers will perform Wednesday, Feb. 21 (8:00-10:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX. At the end of the show, the phone lines will again open for two hours and AMERICAN IDOL viewers will vote for their favorite female contestant(s) from Wednesday’s episode. As on Tuesday, fans can call the branded toll-free telephone numbers (1-866-IDOLS-01, -02, etc.) until 12:00 AM ET/PT (11:00 PM CT/MT), subject to time zone restrictions, or vote via text messaging from their Cingular Wireless phones. Cingular Wireless customers can send the word “vote” to the four-digit short number (5701, 5702, etc.) representing the contestant of their choice.
On Thursday’s LIVE results show, the semifinalists will take the stage to find out their fate. The two lowest vote-getters from Tuesday and Wednesday’s shows [four total, in other words] will be eliminated from the competition live Thursday, Feb. 22 (8:00-9:00 PM ET live/PT tape-delayed) on FOX.
Meet Your 24 Semifinalists:
Male singers scheduled to perform Tuesday, Feb. 20 (8:00-10:00 PM ET/PT) include:
Rudy Cardenas (28) – Currently lives in North Hollywood, CA, but grew up in Denver, CO. Cardenas was born in Venezuela and has a Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance from the University of Northern Colorado.
Jared Cotter (25) – Grew up in Kew Gardens, NY, and currently lives in West Orange, NJ. He has a degree in business management from Five Towns College, Long Island.
Sundance Head (28) – Currently lives in Porter, TX, and is the son of Roy Head (who had a No. 1 song in 1965, “Treat Her Right”). His life has been centered around music and he can play five instruments.
Paul Kim (25) – Currently lives in Saratoga, CA, and is working as a pool maintenance technician. He grew up with a love of soul music and enjoys gardening.
Blake Lewis (25) – Currently lives in Bothell, WA, and began “beat boxing” in his senior year of high school. Lewis was a member of a youth choir group that traveled to Europe.
Sanjaya Malakar (17) – Currently lives in Federal Way, WA, and comes from a family of singers. He spent four years in Hawaii performing with the Hawaii Children's Theater.
Chris Richardson (22) – Currently lives in Chesapeake, VA, and is a supervisor at a restaurant. He was born in Belgium into a military family and performs at local clubs.
Nick Pedro (25) – Currently lives in Taunton, MA, and made it to Hollywood last season. Pedro has performed at talent shows and is an account executive.
Brandon Rogers (29) – From North Hollywood, CA, but spent six years in Dallas. Rogers has been singing for as long as he can remember. He works as a voice coach, wedding singer and background singer. His mother is a published songwriter.
Phil Stacey (29) – Currently lives in Jacksonville, FL; however, he grew up in Cincinnati. Stacy has a degree in vocal performance and is a singer in the Navy. He is married with two children.
Chris Sligh (28) – Currently lives in Greenville, SC, and is the son of missionaries. Sligh spent 10 years with his family in Germany. Since attending Bob Jones University, he has traveled and performed with a band.
AJ Tabaldo (22) – Currently lives in Santa Maria, CA, and has been singing since the age of 5. He is a supervisor for a shipping service.
Female singers scheduled to perform Wednesday, Feb. 21 (8:00-10:00 PM ET/PT) include:
Alaina Alexander (24) – Currently lives in West Hollywood, CA, and has been singing all her life. Her favorite artist is Mariah Carey. She has been pursuing a career in music but almost gave up her dream until she made it on AMERICAN IDOL.
Antonella Barba (20) – From Point Pleasant, NJ, Barba attends Catholic University in Washington, DC, pursuing an architecture degree. She began singing in sixth grade and once toured with the Monmouth Conservatory of Music in England.
Melinda Doolittle (29) – Currently lives in Brentwood, TN. Doolittle is a graduate of Belmont University in Nashville and has a bachelor’s degree in Commercial Music. She is a backup singer on stage and in the studio.
Stephanie Edwards (19) – Currently lives in Savannah, GA. Edwards sang at the famed Apollo Theater when she appeared on “It’s Showtime at the Apollo.” She has won every singing contest she has ever entered.
Gina Glocksen (22) – Currently lives in Naperville, IL, and works as a dental assistant. Glocksen also performs in a cover band. She tried out for AMERICAN IDOL last season and made it to Day 4 of the Hollywood Round.
Leslie Hunt (24) – Currently lives in Chicago, IL. Hunt is a dog walker who is studying to become a dog trainer. She also plays the piano.
Lakisha Jones (27) – Grew up in Flint, MI, and began singing at age 5. Gospel is her Jones’ favorite type of music but she has trained formally in classical music.
Amy Krebs (22) – Currently lives in Federal Way, WA. Krebs has been singing since she was a small child and attended the American Musical and Dramatic Academy in New York City. She is fluent in German and lived in Germany for three years.
Haley Scarnato (24) – Currently lives in San Antonio, TX. Scarnato, who recently became engaged, has been performing as a freelance singer since she was 15 years old and considers Celine Dion her hero.
Jordin Sparks (17) – Currently lives in Glendale, AZ. Sparks began singing when she was only 18 months old. She won the “Arizona Idol” contest. Her favorite band is Something Corporate.
Sabrina Sloan (27) – Currently lives in Studio City, CA. Sloan attended the Northwestern University music and theater program and has performed across the country with the touring production of “Hairspray.”
Nicole Tranquillo (20) – Currently lives in Philadelphia, PA, where she is a vocal major at the University of the Arts. Tranquillo began taking voice lessons when she was 12 years old.